Request a Quote

Request a Quote

Please complete the form below, we’d love to hear from you!

The benefits of a Federation

  • 17th February 2014

The benefits of a Federation

Having made a positive decision to take control and develop your federation, the next step is to define what you would like your federation to do, and achieve, for the member practices.

The RCGP defines federating as - Practices 'working together to share resources, expertise and services'. In effect this means a group of practices collectively;

1) Developing new services
2) Tendering for services
3) Jointly gaining efficiency savings and economies of scale
4) Improving local service integration
5) Being able to better compete with private providers
6) Strengthening clinical governance, quality and safety
7) Developing training and education capacity.

Developing a federation is NOT about merging practices, but rather how you come together and by combining resources make it easier to address the challenges faced by General Practice - we identified those in our last blog.

Key benefits of forming a GP federation

There are many benefits to forming a federation; some of these are;

  • A legal entity federation provides protection to all member practices and provides an effective means of bidding for services. (For most NHS contracts a legal entity will be required in order for the contract to be placed.)
  • Protection of GP income streams - the federation can bid for Local Enhanced Services activity (LES contracts are being removed by stealth in some parts of the country), and then manage these through the federation;
  • The federation has the ability to deal more easily on behalf of the Practices through one organisation, particularly when it comes to contracting;
  • The federation can partner with local hospital trusts to deliver services, bring new income to member practices;
    (i.) This includes the ability to become part of a prime, principle or alliance contract;
    (ii) Prime and principle contracts both allow for subcontracting (more of that in a future blog);
  • The more practices that join the better for the local CCG, particularly as they contract with the federation, as this will reduce transaction costs and put money back into patient care;
  • A federation also provides both a vehicle and skills to successfully bid for services - it is the only way to bid for some contracts, especially Any Qualified Provider (AQP) and a full Invitation To Tender (ITT). This also helps to keep out the corporate competition; (The company allows you to compete with other providers)
  • A federation will support local practices in providing quality services for all patients, reducing unwarranted and unexplained variation;
  • It provides a platform for innovation and transformational change, improving local service and providing a vehicle to establish integrated care, with increased collaboration;
  • A federation also provides a route to strengthen clinical governance, quality and safety;
  • It also provides a platform to deliver significant economies of scale and efficiency savings; using size as strength to reduce expenses and avoid duplication.

Above all else, a federation will be locally run, by local GP Practice stakeholders, to meet local needs.  As a legal entity the board will run the organisation using due diligence and skills. Nobody can interfere with that, or tell the company board what to do - the company is in control of its own destiny.

In our next issue, we will look at the steps to getting you started on the pathway to having a highly successful federation. 

For more information on how we can support you in forming a federation, or to arrange to speak to one of our experts please contact enquiry@bw-medical.co.uk or call 0191 653 1022.

Who writes this?

Scott Mckenzie

Scott Mckenzie

NHS Management Consultant / Working at Scale
Find out more about Scott
  • Very smooth changeover to BW, with good communication at all times. Very efficient in the production of the accounts (as promised) and the Partners are delighted with the advice received to date.

    Paul Atkinson, Practice Manager
    Netherfield House Surgery, Northumberland
  • BW Medical Accountants have a good working knowledge of General Practice and are keenly aware of the challenges Practices face within the changing environment of the NHS.  Benfield Park have been very impressed by the way BW Medical continue to deliver the range of services they provide from Accounts to Tax and NHS Pension advice. 

    We have found Practice consultation and engagement from BW Medical specifically helpful to shape the future of the Practice.

    Jonathan McCutcheon, Practice Manager
    Benfield Park Medical Group, Newcastle
  • We had no hesitation in moving to BW Medical Accountants.  For any business your accountant is integral, and for us one of the most important factors to this relationship is to have a personal and trusting approach, which BW have undoubtedly achieved. 

    The service we receive and the interest they show in our practice assures us that they have a genuine interest in us and commitment to us.  More importantly they are always helpful and polite to answer even the dumbest of questions!  They give us confidence and reassurance knowing that they are always very up-to-date with all the numerous changes within general practice and we would have no hesitation in recommending them to other practices seeking a professional and personal accountancy service.

    Jackie Rotherham, Practice Manager
    The James Street Family Practice, Lincolnshire
  • We moved to BW Medical Accountants in 2013 and we are delighted that we have.  Having been in the same business for over 20 years it is important to have a relationship with the accountancy team but most importantly you need to have trust.  We made the decision to move our business to BW Medical Accountants and having worked with the Team especially Tina we are very satisfied.  Tina going through the accounts brought to our attention many things that I was not aware of in the past.  The first years' experience can only be described as excellent.

    Customer service is first and foremost with BW and this shines through as each and every one of them are approachable, helpful and most importantly understand and know the business.  General practice is complex and is going to get more complex in the coming years.  We need Accountants who truly understand our business. We as a practice and as individuals would certainly recommend BW Medical Accountants.

    Gloria Middleton, Managing Partner
    Westbourne Medical Group, Sunderland
  • We changed to BW Medical Accountants during this financial year and I would say we have just had the most transparent and understandable end of year meeting and the best planning advice I have ever had in 16 years of practice.

    Dr H Jervis, Partner
    Temple Sowerby Medical Practice, Cumbria

Newsletter Signup

Loading...